The third flight of Blue Origin's New Shepard - Stuff

The third flight of Blue Origin’s New Shepard

Jeff Bezos’s Blue Origin has been making strides in the realm of reusable spacecraft. Sure, a single mistake would have sent Blue’s New Shepard rocket tumbling into a fiery crater but a mistake hasn’t been made yet. And it’s been three flights with the same rocket, so far.

Blue Origin have posted their third flight, from liftoff to their apogee some 103.8km above the Earth. It’s still only a quarter of the way to the International Space Station but that height is considers to be ‘space’. The launch is impressive in itself, as throwing several tons into space always is, but it’s not the highlight.

The highlight is watching New Shepard dropping out of the sky at high speed before the booster fires again, eventually touching the spacecraft down at the centre of a burnt touchpad, unharmed. It’s like seeing a live-action childhood cartoon come to life. Now if we could just get cleared for a seat on one of these things…

Stuff South Africa's online editor and print assistant editor, Brett Venter has churned out more words on more titles than most journalists will in a career. He's kind of shy.

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